Thursday, 18 April 2019

EU commissioner hopes that Babiš gov't will not rely on SPD

12 April 2018

Brussels/Prague, April 11 (CTK correspondent) - Vera Jourova, the Czech EU commissioner for justice, customers and gender equality, hopes that Czech ANO leader Andrej Babis will not decide to form a government relying on support of the Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD) movement, she told reporters on Wednesday.

ANO comfortably won the October 2017 general election but a single-party minority cabinet of Babis lost the confidence vote in parliament in January. President Milos Zeman then assigned Babis to launch new government-forming negotiations.

After the recent failure of the talks between ANO and the Social Democrats (CSSD), Zeman recommended Babis last night that he should start negotiations on support for his new minority government with the SPD and the Communists (KSCM).

Many commentators describe the two parties, mainly the far-right SPD, as extremist.

Jourova has been a member of ANO since 2013. Before taking up the EC post, she was a deputy chairwoman of ANO.

"I would have to debate it with my own conscience first, and then also with Europe, having to explain what happened there [in Prague]. I really do not know how I would comment on it," Jourova said in Brussels on Wednesday, referring to the prospect of an ANO-KSCM-SPD government alliance.

She said she feels "gloomy" at Zeman having advised Babis to negotiate on a government with the SPD and the KSCM.

"I still hope that this will not happen, and I am really intensively pondering on what this would mean for me," said Jourova, whose mandate as a commissioner, like the whole EC's, ends next year.

"Politics, of which I have been a part for some time now, has taught me that swift movements are undesirable," she said.

The Czech Republic has the best prospect of being a stable and fully democratic society, which is why there is no reason for its government to depend on the SPD's support, Jourova said, adding that she had told her position to Babis previously.

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